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Books - Professional & Technical - Professional Science - Mathematics - My Mathematics Collection for Self Directed Education

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    The Language of Mathematics: Making the Invisible Visible
    by Keith J. Devlin, Keith Devlin
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 March, 2000)
    list price: $14.95 -- our price: $14.95
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    Editorial Review

    Keith Devlin is trying to be the Carl Sagan of mathematics, and he is succeeding. He writes: "Though the structures and patterns of mathematics reflect the structure of, and resonate in, the human mind every bit as much as do the structures and patterns of music, human beings have developed no mathematical equivalent of a pair of ears. Mathematics can be seen only with the eyes of the mind." All of his books are attempts to get around this problem, to "try to communicate to others some sense of what it is we experience--some sense of the simplicity, the precision, the purity, and the elegance that give the patterns of mathematics their aesthetic value."

    Life by the Numbers, Devlin's companion book to the PBS series of the same name, is heavily illustrated and soothingly low on equations. But as he says, wanting mathematics without abstract notation "is rather like saying that Shakespeare would be much easier to understand if it were written in simpler language."

    The Language of Mathematics is Devlin's second iteration of the approach he used in Mathematics: The Science of Patterns. It covers all the same ground (and uses many of the same words) as the latter, but with fewer glossy pictures, sidebars, and references. Devlin has also added chapters on statistics and on mathematical patterns in nature. --Mary Ellen Curtin ... Read more

    Reviews (11)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Perceiving patterns.
    Devlin: "The particular topics I have chosen are all central themes within mathematics... But the fact is, I could have chosen any collection of seven or eight general areas and told the same story; That mathematics is the science of patterns, and those patterns can be found anywhere you care to look for them, in the physical universe, in the living world, or even in our own minds. And that mathematics serves us by making the invisible visible."
    At this writing it has been more than a few years since my last class in mathematics. But I liked math as a student and still do, even at the point that notation and degree of abstraction begins to hurt my head, so to speak, I still like it. There is a solidity and a beauty in mathematics that eclipses the empirical sciences. It is not only the practical applicability, logical purity, and beauty of mathematics that interest me, it is also its very immateriality. As Devlin states, "music exists not on the printed page, but in our minds. The same is true for mathematics; the symbols on a page are just a representation of the mathematics."
    This is a wonderful book. Before 1900, mathematics could be wholly categorized within about a dozen subjects. While advances are still being made in some of these older disciplines -- Devlin discusses how developments in number theory are being applied to encryption for such purposes as banking security -- there are now at least 60-70 somewhat distinct disciplines of mathematics. The author reveals the logical foundations, history, and current applications of number theory, mathematical logic, the calculus, relativistic geometry, topology, and probability. Applications of mathematics to such seemingly far-flung fields as linguistics, electrodynamics, and astrophysics are briefly but aptly considered. He introduces us to the patterns and progressions of perceptive minds, from the Pythagoreans, Platonists, and Peripatetics, to Pascal and Penrose, with glances at Galileo, Gauss and Godel. [Okay, enough alliteration ... just having a little fun with patterns; and patterns, as Devlin instructs, is precisely what mathematics is all about.]

    5-0 out of 5 stars Breathtaking
    This book is an incredible account into the ideas of mathematics. Devlin presents simple and extremely abstract ideas into a language that just about anyone can understand. Although some previous knowledge of the fields investigated does help, this book serves as a great introduction into such things as perspective geometry, non-Euclidean geometry, network theory, topology and quantum mechanincs. It also provides some great insights into the history and uses of number theory, algebra, geometry and calculus. I've have never read a mathematical/scientific work that was written with such passion and was a complete page turner (I read it straight over the course of 3 days). I am still amazed on how such a work can be under $50 because it is worth much more than that.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Clear and engaging
    Keith Devlin is one of the best popular mathematics writers around, and this is one of his best works.The eight chapters cover number theory, set theory, calculus, group theory, topology, probability and the application of mathematics to the physical world.The discussion in each chapter, couched generally in English, not mathematics, is so clear that a math-phobic can understand it.By the end of each chapter a great deal of fascinating mathematics has been described, and in some cases the formal basis is sketched--but the emphasis is always on narration, and a lay reader who doesn't even want to understand mathematics can still read this and get a sense of the dramatic history of mathematics.

    Devlin states at the end that he decided to exclude many areas of mathematics in order to focus more effectively on what he did cover. As a result there is little or no coverage of chaos theory, game theory, catastrophe theory, or a long list of other topics.The fact is there will always be holes in a book this size--mathematics has expanded so much in the last hundred years that even a book ten times this size could barely survey it.The decision to focus was a good one, and the subjects chosen are good: the truly exciting stories are here: Archimedes, Fermat, Gauss, Galois, Riemann, Wiles, and many more.

    Potential purchasers should note, by the way, that this book was reworked from Devlin's "Mathematics: The Science Of Patterns".In Devlin's words (not from either book): "The Language of Mathematics is a restructuring of Science of Patterns that omits most of the color illustrations (a minus) but has two new chapters covering topics not in Science of Patterns (a plus). If you want lots of color, go for patterns; Language of Mathematics covers more ground."I've read both, and I have to say they're both worth getting.The two new chapters in this book are the ones on probability and the applications of mathematics in science; they're well done and interesting.However, the pictures in Science of Patterns are very high quality.

    They're both fine books, and I can strongly recommend each of them.If you have to get one, I'd say get Science of Patterns.Even though Language of Mathematics does have some colour plates, Science of Patterns is really a gorgeous book to read with many good illustrations.I ended up buying both, and you may end up doing that too. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0716739674
    Subjects:  1. General    2. Mathematics    3. Mathematics (General)    4. Popular works    5. Science/Mathematics    6. Applied mathematics    7. Philosophy of mathematics   


    Strength In Numbers : Discovering the Joy and Power of Mathematics in Everyday Life
    by Sherman K.Stein
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (05 February, 1999)
    list price: $19.95 -- our price: $19.95
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    Reviews (5)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Examples of why math makes the world go round
    Since it does provide much of the foundation for modern societies and the applications are commonly covered with very effective disguises, mathematics is both a pillar and a whipping post. More misunderstood and hence feared than any other subject, it is the only one where it is fashionable and acceptable to profess ignorance. The only solution to this problem is to gently explain how valuable it is and let the economic realities of mathematical knowledge take control. In this book, Stein puts forward many valuable points concerning how necessary mathematics is.
    While I do endorse the book, there is one negative point that must be made. The title should be different. One of the points in the book is that mathematics is much more than just number manipulation. Although this is well-known to mathematicians, it is a very common misconception. Therefore, the emphasis on numbers present in the title is unfortunate, but probably necessary for marketing purposes.
    Now that the ranting is complete, it is time to praise the interior of the book. All of the points are significant and well made. Stein writes very well, explaining topics in a manner that keeps understanding within the range of the target audience, which is the intelligent layperson. His multiple explanations as to why the product of two negative numbers is positive is excellent. In my career, I have encountered several very educated people in technical fields who really did not understand why this is so. They had simply accepted it because they knew it worked, but had always been afraid of raising the question for fear of embarrassment.
    Another point that cannot be emphasized enough is the sudden appearance of a "miracle"(reviewer word) number. These are numbers that are put forward to justify a point and are not subject to critical review. After that, they are accepted at a level that makes the belief in them an act of faith. Honestly, is nature so inefficient in anything that humans really use only 10% of their brains?This is an absurd number that has been repeated so many times that it is accepted as gospel. Stein does his part to help clear up some of these problems. However, it would have been better if more time had been spent in this area.
    While there is some strength in numbers, the real power lies in the effective use of them, which is the realm of the underlying mathematics. This book contains many valuable lessons on why mathematics, rather than money, makes the world go round.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Demystifying math...
    Professor Stein's book is an amazing read. It's humorous, insightful, and educational. A couple of those "great mysteries" from our math classes in school are solved and you will slap your forehead and say,"Well, they could have taught me THAT years ago!"

    I highly recommend this book to all levels of math students AND math teachers.

    4-0 out of 5 stars As Someone Who Has to Encourage Math. to Youngsters
    I can use the book to indirectly persuade youngsters, who think Math. is nothing but number and boring, to take it more seriously.It's hard for me to come up with more logical and more convincing than what already there in the book. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0471329746
    Sales Rank: 541238
    Subjects:  1. General    2. Mathematics    3. Popular works    4. Science    5. Science/Mathematics    6. Science / General    7. Science: General Issues   


    e: The Story of a Number
    by Eli Maor
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (04 May, 1998)
    list price: $18.95 -- our price: $12.89
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    Editorial Review

    Until about 1975, logarithms were every scientist's best friend. They were the basis of the slide rule that was the totemic wand of the trade, listed in huge books consulted in every library. Then hand-held calculators arrived, and within a few years slide rules were museum pieces.

    But e remains, the center of the natural logarithmic function and of calculus. Eli Maor's book is the only more or less popular account of the history of this universal constant. Maor gives human faces to fundamental mathematics, as in his fantasia of a meeting between Johann Bernoulli and J.S. Bach. e: The Story of a Number would be an excellent choice for a high school or college student of trigonometry or calculus. --Mary Ellen Curtin ... Read more

    Reviews (41)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A must for students of Mathematics
    This book was written well, and every student interested in Mathematics or pursuing a career in engineering or the sciences should read this.You really don't need to be a math genious to enjoy this book.I would recommend that high school Math teachers and even college professors assign a little reading each day of the history of their profession.This is one of those history books.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great book Great author - Worth Reading!!
    This is great book. Besides `e' it covers all the history and good stories about calculus. I did not get bored at all. This explains all the difficult concepts with great detail and fun to read. I never got bored. Maor does wonderful job of bringing together maths, fun and history.
    From Napier to Newton he covers everything. It gives the insight to the common used notations today. This books is collectors item.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Never a boring moment.
    How much have computers changed our lives?John Napier spend 20 years from 1594 to 1614 performing calculations for his logarithm tables.Today, that entire body of work is easily reproduced in minutes, using Microsoft Excel.But Napier'sinvention quickly spread around the world, creating a calculation revolution that empowered grateful scientists with speed they could only imagine before.I suppose it was the greatest computation breakthrough since the abacus.

    From Napier forward, the story of e proceeds, eloquently recounted by Maor.There is not a boring moment in the book.
    ... Read more

    Isbn: 0691058547
    Subjects:  1. History & Philosophy    2. History Of Mathematics    3. Mathematics    4. Number Theory    5. Science/Mathematics    6. History of Science and Medicine, Philosophy of Science    7. Mathematics / History   


    Maths: A Student's Survival Guide: A Self-Help Workbook for Science and Engineering Students
    by Jenny Olive
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (16 July, 1998)
    list price: $35.00
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    Reviews (3)

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best books for self study
    As a finance professional, I was becoming overwhelmed with the growing complexity of financial products.Over time, my patch work math education was beginning to fray resulting in growing frustration and loss of confidence.

    Jenny Olive's book is very helpful for people entering into a self study math program to bring together their fragmented college level math education and build mathematical understanding. If you were like me, the fast pace of college level courses forced you to cut corners and rush through material without the deep understanding that builds confidence.The book begins with Algebra and moves on to Trig and Calculus.The explanations are extremely lucid and the exercises are put together intelligently to move you toward greater complexity.And yes, there is no substitute for working out the problems as any good mathematician will tell you.I disagree with a previous reviewer on this score. Although, I felt (somewhat arrogantly) that I did not need to review Algebra, I found myself red faced and stuck in some of the more advanced problems.Fortunately the clear explanation and repeated problem solving gave me the insights that I was lacking.I found it helpful to work with a graphing calculator to help visualize some of the mathematics.It's also a great way to learn a graphing calculator!

    I understand that Ms. Olive is adding two new chapters to her next edition, which she has kindly made available on her website for persons who own the current version. It would be nice if she would make it available in a downloadable PDF version.

    I am hoping that the author will choose to follow this up with similar books on Probability and Linear Algebra.Her recommendations for further reading would also be very helpful.Great math books (and math teachers)are worth their weight in gold.Buy this book for your math library.You won't regret it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A great review
    I didn't take any Math senior year, and I took 2 years off after high school, and now I'm going to be a Computer Science major, so I really needed this book!I bought it a week ago and I'm halfway done, so now Iwon't have to take precalculus over again.The previous reviewer is right,it could include more, but if I have time, I'll just buy a Schwab outlineto cover vectors and so on.One thing about this book is that it has fewexercises, which is fine, because what person self-studying is actuallygoing to do 30 exercises . . . I would, but the few exercises getsmemoving through the material faster.

    4-0 out of 5 stars self help book for alg/trig/log/calc I. (applied science)
    This book is written for someone who has been exposed to the subject but did not understand it, or has not had a math class in a while.Ms. Olive has taken extra effort to help the students avoid the pitfalls oftenencountered in these math topics. This attitude is reflected throughout thebook.I felt that with the numerous problems solved at the back of thebook (in detail), the price of this book,was a frugal investment.Withvectors and additional physical science problems added to this book, Iwould give it 5 stars. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0521575869
    Sales Rank: 650372
    Subjects:  1. General    2. Mathematics    3. Physics    4. Science/Mathematics    5. Study & Teaching    6. Mathematics for scientists & engineers    7. Science / Physics   

    A History of the Circle: Mathematical Reasoning and the Physical Universe
    by Ernest Zebrowski
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 August, 1999)
    list price: $28.00 -- our price: $28.00
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    Reviews (5)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Zebrowski's History of the Circle is a great fun book.
    This is not a text book, but an fun read that discusses
    interesting topics from physics and math.
    It explains things so well that I wish I had Zebrowski as a professor or could find textbooks written by him.
    I think the lengthy first review below as well as examples from the other reviews give a good idea of the contents of this book.
    It's a joy to read, and to use when explaining things correctly to others.

    3-0 out of 5 stars interesting but ...
    An interesting read which could have benefited from the
    attention of a diligent editor.Sadly, historical details
    are often muddled and in the later chapters the author
    indulges in some freewheeling speculation regarding high
    energy physics while quoting undergraduate level journals
    as sources.
    Nevertheless, all of the subject matter and most of the
    text is well worth a look.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Looking For Pi Info? Its Not Here.
    The first chapter BREIFLY addresses pi, so this not a good source for those of you that may have drawn the same conclusions about the title that I did.However, if you've ever wondered why there are 360 degrees in a circle and how that relates to time or other interesting trivia, this is a great source.I do recomend it to anyone with an intrest in the basic concepts of Physics which somehow work themseves in everywhere.The title would be more acurate if it removed "A History of the Circle" and just left it with "Mathmatical Reasoning and the Physical Universe" because it lacks far to much of the first subject. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0813526779
    Sales Rank: 783181
    Subjects:  1. Circle    2. Cycles    3. Geometry - General    4. History & Philosophy    5. Mathematics    6. Science    7. Science/Mathematics    8. System Theory    9. Systems Analysis   


    Who Is Fourier?: A Mathematical Adventure
    by Transnational College of Lex Tokyo, Yo Sakakibara, Alan Gleason, Transnational College of LEX
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 April, 1995)
    list price: $24.95 -- our price: $16.47
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    Reviews (30)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Dime store teaching philosophy aimed at an unknown audience.
    Who is this book for???It appears to be written for children ages 6 to 9. The text revolves around fictitious characters and banal, time-wasting plots, as if the full concentration of the target reader could only be garnered by wrapping the science into a bed time fable.But what 9-year-old would wade through hundreds of pages to self teach elementary trigonometry, physics and calculus on the way to understanding wave analysis?Perhaps an adult is supposed to read out loud to a child looking at the pictures.I tried it with my 9-year-old daughter and she was bored stiff.The idea of blending pseudo-motivational fiction with science is dead.Barron's tried it with some of its "The Easy Way" remedial math texts, and ended up with junk that everyone hates.But this book is worse.For example, it tries to explain the concept of imaginary numbers in a ludicrous section in which we are to accept the emotional whims of not-so-bright cartoon-like characters as the rationale behind it all.To put it in a nutshell, 2nd grade teaching techniques are used for 10th grade (and up thorough college) material.Oddly, the text is peppered with elementary sentences in various foreign languages, presumably in case you want to simultaneously learn to spell "but no!" in French.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent book on fourier transform
    This book has done an excellent job on explaining fourier transformation. Although I believe I have clear understanding on fourier transform, this book takes me to a new journey and let me look at this transform from another perspective. Well done!

    However, the reason I can not give this book five star is that the book contains many redundant and irrelavant dialogues which distract your attention from time to time. To speed up your reading, you have to filter it out.

    In addition, this book is over size and make it difficult for bed-time reading.

    5-0 out of 5 stars DESERVE MORE THAN 100 STARS
    ENJOY. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0964350408
    Sales Rank: 43544
    Subjects:  1. Fourier Analysis    2. Mathematical Analysis    3. Mathematical Recreations    4. Mathematics    5. Science/Mathematics   


    The Most Beautiful Mathematical Formulas
    by LionelSalem, FrédéricTestard, CoralieSalem
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (February, 1997)
    list price: $15.95 -- our price: $15.95
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    Reviews (4)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Revelation
    If, like me, you were a complete klutz at math, this book is for you.I wouldn't dream of reviling it for not being complex enough.It's attractively presented, comprehensible, and fills a need.

    3-0 out of 5 stars A book for CHILDREN, not for adults!!!
    Don't be fooled by the title of this book. Yes, the book presents most of the important formulas, like Euler's eternal formula e to the power of i x pi plus one equal to zero. But that is it. There is no mathematical deduction or any related calculations . All that contained are cartoon pictures. So I would have two ratings for that book, for children, 5 stars, as this book can stimulate them to pursue mathematics further.One star for adult ( no zero ), so I give this book 3 stars on average!!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Beauty + Simplicity
    Great book. It combines the simplicity of "where to find this formula in daily life", with comics, and a mathematical explanation. Like a gardener story to explain logarithms; or a history of 18th century to explain fractional numbers. It is an excellent gift to make that a kid love the simplicity of mathematics.
    Un gran libro. Combina la simplicidad de "donde encontrar la f-rmula en la vida diaria", con comics y explicaciones matem‡ticas. Como la historia de un jardinero para explicar logaritmos; o una historia del siglo 18 para explicar numeros fraccionales. Es un regalo excelente para hacer que un ni-o ame la simplicidad de las matem‡ticas. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0471176621
    Sales Rank: 581042
    Subjects:  1. Mathematics    2. Reference    3. Science/Mathematics    4. Mathematics / Reference   


    All You Wanted to Know About Mathematics but Were Afraid to Ask: Volume 2 : Mathematics for Science Students (All You Wanted to Know about Mathematics But Were Afraid to Ask)
    by Louis Lyons
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (30 April, 1998)
    list price: $32.99 -- our price: $32.99
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    Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing Book!!
    Louis Lyons makes mathematics come alive in his book, which is really helpful for physics students. He gives you practical applications of all those equations in math which make little sense at first.
    Every chapter has very few problems at the end, but all are really good problems, which test your fundamentals of the chapter.
    I recommend the book to anyone who likes Math, especially those who like it but find some parts of it boring.
    I found it very useful for my IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) preparation too.

    5-0 out of 5 stars get your books & pencils, be ready to ask & learn......
    This is a great book, a must for people from 6 - 96. Is there anything that bothered you in maths, & youwere shy or afraid to ask your strict teacher?well, once you have : All You Wanted to Know About Mathematics but Were Afraid to Ask : Mathematics for Science Students, there'll be no problems at all cause this book will give you answers to all your maths problems..... i advice anyone with trouble in maths to buy & read it carefully.....anyone who buys this book will have no regrets.... ... Read more

    Isbn: 052143601X
    Sales Rank: 233143
    Subjects:  1. Applied    2. Mathematical Physics    3. Mathematics    4. Physics    5. Science    6. Science/Mathematics    7. Mathematics for scientists & engineers    8. Science / Physics   


    The Standard Deviants: Basic Math
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    VHS Tape (20 October, 1998)
    list price: $19.99
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    Editorial Review

    In "The Zany World of Basic Math," the Standard Deviants, an ebullienttroupe of young performers whose specialty is taking serious subjects and makingthem offbeat enough to be memorable, tackle the most basic concepts ofmathematics. Starting off with explanations of integers, the program proceeds tocover addition, subtraction, and multiplication before moving into more advancedconcepts such as exponents and division. Throughout the program the cast crackspainfully corny jokes and occasionally dresses up in some bad costumes to maketheir points. Indeed, this must be the only math lesson to have a "comedyeditor" listed in the opening credits. The underlying principle is that if theperformers make spectacles of themselves, that serves as a mnemonic device andmakes the serious material they're imparting easier to remember. After coveringthe basics, the program moves into decimals, fractions, ratios, and percents.Following each section a quiz appears, which the student can either take orskip, and a "Grand Slam Exam" concludes the entire set of lessons. While thepresentation may be unorthodox, the academic material has been approved by apanel of professors. Though it's not intended as a substitute for classes inmath, students would benefit by using this as review material. --Robert J.McNamara ... Read more


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    • NTSC
    Reviews (2)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Not for younger children
    I bought this DVD for my third-grade twins who are having difficulty memorizing math facts, and don't quite understand the relation between these math facts and the real world.I thought this DVD would be perfect, explaining basic math facts with humor and real life examples.But their explanations are way over the heads of this age group.In explaining the concept of "carrying over" while adding, for instance, here is what is said and written out on the screen:"Carrying over means you take the digit in the tensplace of the digit place sum, and carry over that digit to the next digit place to the left in your addition problem.You do this whenever the sum amount in the digit place is greater than nine."

    Yeah, *I* get it, but it is not the simplest way to present it to an elementary grade child.

    I'm not certain what grade level this series is for -- perhaps middle school and above? -- but definitely not for those just starting out.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I love this stuff
    What an excellent way to learn numbers.The songs are fun and the info is spot on.Learning with the Standard Deviants is the way to go. ... Read more

    Asin: 6305214190
    Subjects:  1. Educational   

    The Standard Deviants - Pre-Algebra, Parts 1 & 2
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    VHS Tape (15 February, 1999)
    list price: $33.99
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    • Color
    • Animated
    • NTSC
    Reviews (1)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Learning Tool
    I am very weak in math, and these videos really helped me when I felt lost in my Algebra class, but felt too stupid to approach my teacher. The material is broken down so that it's easier to understand and there are plenty of examples given to help almost anyone understand what is being taught. I now feel like I have a better grasp on basic Algebra than I did before. The only complaint I have is that towards the end it seemed like they were trying to cover too much in too little time. Or maybe it was just that I wasn't understanding the material. Either way I felt like it started going a bit fast towards the end. However, I still highly recommended this two film boxed set. ... Read more

    Asin: 1581980426
    Sales Rank: 27775
    Subjects:  1. Educational Math   

    The Standard Deviants - Algebra, Parts 1 & 2
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    VHS Tape (20 October, 1998)
    list price: $33.99
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    Editorial Review

    Making algebra entertaining seems like a hopeless, if not downrightinsane, task, but that doesn't stop the Standard Deviants. A youthful cast of performers, who believe no joke, skit, or costume is too corny as long as it helps a student remember something important, throw themselves into "The Adventurous World of College Algebra" by beginning with a spoof of "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Inside a cave, two Indiana Jones wannabes search for, you guessed it, x. Despite the lighthearted approach, this is a serious algebra review course, compiled under the direction of academic advisers.The lessons begin by answering, "What is algebra?" and quickly move into quadratic roots and factors and a section on linear equations. A wacky sense of humor stays a constant, with spoofs of pop culture programs as well as flashy computer graphics appearing to illustrate essential concepts. At the end of each lesson a quiz appears (which the student can take or skip), and the DVD also contains the "Algebra Adventure," a multiple choice test taken by using the DVD player's remote control.A "Quick Review" segment provides a fast overview of the contents. This is an innovative approach to what has often been a daunting and dry subject.--Robert J. McNamara ... Read more


    • Color
    • NTSC
    Reviews (3)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Very good
    I recommend this to anyone having trouble in Algebra. It walks you through problems and gives you the terminology of the subject. Great for reviews.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Savior
    I found the tapes helped me a great deal, considering I have been out of school for 20 years and never learned algebra in high school.The animations are wonderful and most of the time very clear.Of course with anything, you have to do it over and over again until you retain the information, but I will definitely say "Do not start school with out the tapes."There's only one catch, Standard Deviants recorded the tapes so that they build upon one another and you'll need to buy the entire math collection if you want a totally clear understanding.I live by Standard Deviants.Good Luck...

    4-0 out of 5 stars Pretty good overall for beginners or if having difficulty
    I am a High School Freshman just finishing Algebra I & II.I found the tape boring, since it was all review.The little skits reinforced things I already knew.They misrepresented the length.At the beginningof the tape, they said "Part I" would be two hours, but it wasonly one hour and twenty minutes.If it was all new to me, I wouldconsider it pretty good, since it covered everything, and showed meshort-cuts I already knew.The animation was very good.It would probablybe very useful to someone who was having problems in Algebra, or justbeginning in Algebra. ... Read more

    Asin: 6305217092
    Subjects:  1. Educational Math   

    The Standard Deviants - Geometry Video Box
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    VHS Tape (27 April, 1999)
    list price: $33.98 -- our price: $32.28
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    • Color
    • Animated
    • NTSC
    Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Geometry - Part 1 & 2 by The Standard Deviants
    If you have trouble visualizing Geometry, these are the tapes for you.They are entertaining as well as informative.A lot of fun watching and learning at the same time.I recommend them for any grade from middleschool on up. ... Read more

    Asin: 1581980493
    Sales Rank: 19302
    Subjects:  1. Educational Math   


    The Standard Deviants - Trigonometry, Parts 1 & 2
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    VHS Tape (20 October, 1998)
    list price: $33.99 -- our price: $32.29
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    Reviews (4)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good, Fun Video -- only covers the basics
    All the Standart Deviant videos are fun to watch. They have a Saturday-Night-Live format with different people and skits.
    The material covered was good, and it is a great intro to those who haven't any trig background.
    The video series downfall is the material not covered or covered in enough depth: trig identities, vectors, polar and rectangular conversions, imaginary number plane with radical and exponential equations. I found the material not covered to be the toughest concepts in trig. It helps to be ahead of the instructor, but the videos were no help in these tough areas.
    Some of the other Standard Deviant titles are better done, but this video is still a great intro to the easier 2/3 of the material you will encounter.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Pretty good
    Trig is never going to be easy, but it's not as difficult as Calculus, except perhaps if your Trig education was woefully neglected.I would think this would be a good investment for any student who wanted an overview of a Trig class before taking it.Though the student would have to watch the tape, rewind the parts that were difficult or required repetition, and do the proper memorization.For an older person who wants to figure out just what Trig was, or what exactly "the relationships between different parts of a triangle" means, this can be quite helpful.The drive to be entertaining can be a bit annoying as it's kind of like "Mad Magazine meets Sesame Street teaches Math," but this is a standard hazard of the Standard Deviants.The producers have a lot of material to get through, and get through it they do, though I felt something was missing in their discussion of Oblique Triangles.And I'm very glad I don't have to memorize the radian/degree equivalencies and trig functions of the "special angles."

    4-0 out of 5 stars want some real advice...get the whole math pack
    I used to have nightmares about being chased by giant triangles.
    Not any more! the tapes make the unclear...clear thats bottom line. no they arent perfect and nope not enough problems... but overall if your struggling this is the way to go..period ... Read more

    Asin: 6305216967
    Sales Rank: 8690
    Subjects:  1. Educational Math   


    The Standard Deviants - Pre-Calculus, Parts 1 & 2
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    VHS Tape (20 October, 1998)
    list price: $33.99 -- our price: $32.29
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    • Color
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    Reviews (1)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good Intro - Watchable Video
    I found these videos to be a good intro to concepts taught in class. (I find it easier to learn material I have been introduced to than learning from scratch.) The presentation is in a type of Saturday Night Live format.
    These will not take the place of a text or class because the concepts are given in a general sense and not all pre-calculus topics are covered. ... Read more

    Asin: 6305216959
    Sales Rank: 15872
    Subjects:  1. Educational Math   


    Conquering Mathematics: From Arithmetic to Calculus
    by Lloyd Motz, Jefferson Hane Weaver
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 April, 1991)
    list price: $24.95
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    Reviews (1)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Written for me!
    An excerpt from the preface:"...it is not a textbook full of long, boring proofs and hundreds of problems, rather it is an intellectual adventure, to be read with pleasure. It was written to be easily accessible and with concern for the mental tranquility of the reader who will experience considerable fulfillment when he/she sees the simplicity of basic mathematics. The emphasis throughout the book is on the clear explanation of mathematics concepts."

    I have to say that the promises in the excerpt above are gracefully delivered. This is such a great book in it's scope. But it is completely missing graphic illustrations - you know, diagrams, figures, pictures, etc.. It could be the absolute best book hands down, if it just had illustrations in each chapter. Otherwise beautifully written. So, I can't give it five stars. A second edition with graphic illustrations would be awesome! You should know that there are no problem-solution exercises in the book but many good examples and applications are discussed. This book is very friendly and un-assuming. Kudos to the Authors!!!

    OK, the chapters are as follows:

    1. The Number System 2. Irrational Numbers, Imaginary Numbers, and Other Curiosities 3. From Arithmetic to Algebra 4. Graphic Algebra 5. The Geometry of Straight Line Figures 6. The Geometry of the Circle and Trigonometry 7. Analytic Geometry 8. The Calculus and Mathematics in Science Epilogue

    I loved it! Enjoy... ... Read more

    Isbn: 0306437686
    Sales Rank: 392908
    Subjects:  1. General    2. Mathematics    3. Mathematics (General)    4. Science/Mathematics   

    Basic Training in Mathematics : A Fitness Program for Science Students
    by R. Shankar
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (30 June, 1995)
    list price: $72.50 -- our price: $72.50
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    Reviews (7)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Kind of a last resort
    This book tries to cover pretty much all the mathematical methods you'd need in college-level physics if you haven't had much experience with them before. The trouble is that that is a LOT of math, and trying to cover that in a book this size is just asking for trouble.

    If you don't know any of this stuff, this book is going to kill you. It covers multivariable and vector calculus, differential equations, linear algebra, functions of a complex variable, etc. That is maybe 4-5 different math courses. The idea is that physicists don't really need the rigor of theoretical math, they just need to learn the "tools" so they can do the practical, applied stuff.

    This book is good if you already have a general idea of these concepts and just want to get the important parts.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Quick math methods book
    .If you enjoyed Klepner & Ramsay 's "Quick Calculus" as a school student for its engaging and dearly wished there was an undergrad math methods book in that style! The answer is this book. You may not find a work book type fromat like "Quick calculus" . But let me assure you despite the formal style and Prof Shankar's repute for being verbose you will find it like a rhaphsodyand yet in coherent english. I only dearly wish Prof Shankar would kill some research time to write a Graduate level fitness programme. I think all the previous reviewers justly awarded 5 stars to this book. To those raters responisble for eating half a star , let me say there is no other engaging lively and painless math review than this. If you find this book painful I don't know what to say . But on the contrary of you thought the book was too easy then read the title it is a fitness programme not a discourse like Morse & Feshbach or Courant & Hilbert.

    5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent math review for physics
    This book covers the basic areas of math needed for physics.It is quite readable and useful for self-study.It covers the standard topics in a concise fashion, but in sufficient detail to be useful.I used it as apersonal math refresher after being away from advanced physics for someyears.It gave me what I needed. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0306450356
    Sales Rank: 514014
    Subjects:  1. Advanced    2. Calculus    3. Chemistry - General    4. Life Sciences - Biology - General    5. Mathematical Analysis    6. Mathematics    7. Science/Mathematics    8. Basic Math    9. Engineering    10. Science / Biology   


    Div, Grad, Curl, and All That: An Informal Text on Vector Calculus
    by H. M. Schey
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 October, 1996)
    list price: $32.70 -- our price: $32.70
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    Reviews (21)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great for review...not for first exposures
    I took multivariable caculus and vector calc not terribly long ago.While I did okay in the class, I finished it feeling two questions were still a bit hazy: 1) What exactly is the significance (physical and computational) of all of these techniques and operators (div, surface integrals, curl...etc.)?, and 2) What's the big picture...how does this all fit together?.

    While this book is absolutely fantastic, from it's laid back writing style to its clear emphasis on applications, it is not a textbook in the traditional sense.In other words, this book makes a great supplement (without a doubt, the most commonly recommended one) and a fantastic review book, but it should not be read to learn vector calc for a first time.Its proofs are fiated and incomplete (the author is the first to admit this) and scope is limited (again, the author seems to take pride in this fact).But who cares; that's not the point.The point is this: vector calc is one of the most beautiful ways to mathematically model various important areas in science and mathematics, and Schey isn't going to finish with you until you have a really great INTUITIVE understanding of what it is you're actually doing.

    Scientists, engineers, and math lovers unite!This book is fun, easy to read, and great for filling in the gaps.It's been a classic for three decades, and it's a mistake for anyone with an interest in vector calculus to pass it up.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent book, but not as a stand-alone text
    As an undergraduate, I've already taken a course in multivariable calculus, and I found this text to be a quick and accessible review (you can read it in one sitting). That being said, I'm not sure if I would have gotten much out of it if I hadn't already had exposure to the subject. In addition to single-variable calculus, the book assumes knowledge of double and triple integration, which I didn't learn until I took a course in multivariable calculus. If you really want to learn the subject, but can't take a course in it for whatever reason, I'd recommend actually spending the $100 or so it takes to buy a textbook, and working through it on your own. I used "Vector Calculus" by Marsden and Tromba, which was adequate for my purposes. If you're not good at translating mathematical jargon into everyday language, you'll find "Div, Grad, and Curl" to be a useful supplement. I had better insight into the physical meaning of the del operator after reading it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A must for engineering and science students.
    If you are an undergraduate engineering or science major, then you need to get a copy of this old classic and become good friends with it.If you are a graduate student or a professional in some branch of engineering or science, and you have not already read this book, then sneak out and get a copy before anybody finds out. (You can pretend that you really knew this stuff all along.)Seriously, this book should be considered Math 101 for scientists and engineers.You simply cannot get by without knowing the basics of vector calculus, curvilinear coordinates, Gauss' law, Stokes' theorem, and of course, the protagonists Divergence, Gradient, and Curl, known to their friends as Div, Grad, and Curl.

    This is about as tame a book on vector calculus as you could ever hope to meet, which is part of the reason it's been so popular for so long.It's very easy to read (as far as math texts go), it has many simple but effective illustrations, it has ample exercises (most of which have solutions in the back), and it avoids excessive formalism, instead focusing on the nuts-and-bolts of vector calculus as it most commonly arises in electrostatics, for example.

    Math majors will not be so enamored of this book, simply because of its heuristic approach (hence the word "informal" in the subtitle) and its close ties with applications, which it uses as motivation. Moreover, Schey does not develop differential forms or exterior calculus, which logically subsume and extend the material in this book (at the expense of far greater abstraction, which the majority of engineering and science students will prefer to avoid or at least delay).Instructors, if you teach electrostatics or fluid dynamics, you may wish to consider having this as a supplementary text for your students.It's such a clear and helpful little book your students will really appreciate it.(But, you already knew that.)

    Bottom line for engineering and science students: You need to know this material, and it simply won't get any easier than this.Don't wait for the audio edition! ... Read more

    Isbn: 0393969975
    Sales Rank: 10703
    Subjects:  1. Astrophysics & Space Science    2. Functional Analysis    3. Mathematics    4. Science    5. Science/Mathematics    6. Vector Analysis    7. Vector & tensor analysis   


    Perfect Form
    by Don S. Lemons
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (03 March, 1997)
    list price: $26.95 -- our price: $26.95
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    Reviews (3)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Look at Variational Methods and Applications
    For a third or fourth year student in physics this short book, Perfect Form, would be near perfect as either a short overview of variational methods, or as a supplementary text for an advanced classical physics course.

    I have occasionally encountered variational methods, but until reading Perfect Form I had not appreciated the significance and scope and even fascination of this topic. In a little more than one hundred pages Dr. Don Lemons does a credible job of introducing a wide range of physics problems amenable to variational methods.

    He begins with optics and Fermat's Principle of Least Time and thereby motivates the derivation of the Euler-Lagrange equation. In later chapters he examines the principle of least potential energy, Lagrange multipliers, the principle of least action, and Hamilton's principle, in both a restricted and more general form. The supplementary problems at the end of each chapter are few in number, but are carefully defined and are more like tutorials than standalone problems.

    In my experience textbooks dedicated to this topic - like Calculus of Variations by Robert Weinstock and Introduction to the Calculus of Variations by Hans Sagan - are difficult and require considerable mathematical maturity. Other texts - like Advanced Calculus of Several Variables (C. H. Edwards) and Advanced Mathematical Methods for Engineering and Science Students (Stephenson and Radmore) and Mathematics Applied to Continuum Mechanics (L. A. Segel) - often relegate this subject to a single (and often final) chapter.

    Most undergraduates are unlikely to have time for a formal course in calculus of variations. With this book Don Lemons has convinced me that this topic is too important and too interesting to ignore. I recommend that you acquire a copy of Perfect Form for self-study or as supplementary text.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A nice short readable introduction
    I just took an independent study in the calculus of variations out of Gelfand's classic text.I covered the first four chapters which is a nice introduction.However the text is pretty technical and so Perfect Form (PF) was a great companion.Its laid back, accessible to a sophomore physics student and fine for self study.It has a range of physical problems from calculations to nice little problems to think about.

    Moreover, it motivates the material well.This is one of those books that keeps driving home a few, just a few points and avoids too many topics.For instance, I was never knew why the lagrangian should be the difference of kinetic and potential energies, this book will motivate this form.

    Finally, its a realistic book.I found no great effort in reading the entire book and working about 3/4 of the problems (some I just didn't find interesting) on my own in a busy semester.This is just a fun little book that shows you some variational methods!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Very readable introduction to calculus of variations.
    This is an engaging book, written on a fairly basic level.Any junior with some calculus should be able to handle it.The author has done a great job of introducing the calculus of variations, Lagrange multipliers,etc, and applying them to clear examples from physics (Fermat's principle,Lagrangians and Hamiltonians).I only wish he had expanded the topicssomewhat to introduce a few more topics to whet the appetite, such as phasespaces, Liouville's theorem, Noether's theorem. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0691026637
    Sales Rank: 537664
    Subjects:  1. Calculus of variations    2. Mathematical Physics    3. Physics    4. Science    5. Science/Mathematics    6. Science / Physics   


    Numbers: The Universal Language
    by Denis Guedj
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 September, 1997)
    list price: $12.95 -- our price: $9.71
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    Reviews (4)

    1-0 out of 5 stars gimme a break
    If you want art buy an art book, if you want math history get Bell or Boyer (among others). But if you don't like to read and think math should be pretty pictures this book is for you.
    Many retail stores carry this book so get it in your hands to decide whether you want it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Historical Book about Mathematics
    I really enjoyed the history and the art in this book!I was also glad the author chose to put a Chronology at the end of the book.After reading it, it dawned on me that there are no famous women mathematicians! Isthat true!

    I am going to be teaching 9th grade Algebra soon and amlooking forward to sharing this book with my future students. I would liketo find some of the art used in this book to display in my classroom.Ifthere are any ideas as to where some can be found, please feel free toemail me.Hope you enjoy the book as much as I did!

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Mathematics Book That Will Change Your Life!
    Positional notation i.e Hindu(Arabic) is beautifully explained in this book like no other! The Photographs the artwork and the layout of the book make it even more readable. For anyone like myself that couldn't understandMathematics at High School or University - primarily because your Teacheror Lecturer didn't understand it either should buy this book! It will openyour eyes! ... Read more

    Isbn: 0810928450
    Sales Rank: 302255
    Subjects:  1. Arithmetic    2. History & Philosophy    3. Mathematics    4. Number Theory    5. Numbers    6. Numeration    7. Science/Mathematics    8. Theory Of Numbers   


    An Imaginary Tale
    by Paul J. Nahin
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (24 August, 1998)
    list price: $29.95 -- our price: $19.77
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    Editorial Review

    At the very beginning of his book on i, the square root of minus one, Paul Nahin warns his readers: "An Imaginary Tale has a very strong historical component to it, but that does not mean it is a mathematical lightweight. But don't read too much into that either. It is *not* a scholarly tome meant to be read only by some mythical, elite group.... Large chunks of this book can, in fact, be read and understood by a high school senior who has paid attention to his or her teachers in the standard fare of pre-college courses. Still, it will be most accessible to the million or so who each year complete a college course in freshman calculus.... But when I need to do an integral, let me assure you I have not fallen to my knees in dumbstruck horror. And neither should you."

    Nahin is a professor of electrical engineering at the University of New Hampshire; he has also written a number of science fiction short stories. His style is far more lively and humane than a mathematics textbook while covering much of the same ground. Readers will end up with a good sense for the mathematics of i and for its applications in physics and engineering. --Mary Ellen Curtin ... Read more

    Reviews (31)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Many interesting aspects, but inconsistency a big detraction
    Nahin's book has many amusing and interesting aspects, but it suffers from an overall lack of focus and consistency:

    1)Is it math history (as the title suggests) or math exposition (as the preface suggests)?It is much more of the latter, and while there are enjoyable bits of each it serves neither one extraordinarily well.

    2)Is it for a gifted high school student (as he alludes), or a practicing engineer/scientist/mathematician?He painstakingly belabors some simple things (definition of electrical current, etc.), yet at other times races through much deeper concepts (Green's Theorem, etc.).Without at least integral calculus, and better yet a few courses beyond that, much of the book would probably be very frustrating and/or inaccessible.For those with this background the painstaking elementary explanations are in the way.

    3)Is it intended to be rigorous, pragmatic, or somewhere in between?This varies wildly from one topic to the next, to the point where both the careful reader and the casual follower are sure to both be left shaking their heads.

    One other minor criticism: while his non-stuffy approach to this topic is at first refreshing, the overly informal style and excessive amount of first-person commentary (and attempts at humor) can grow annoying.

    With these caveats, there really are some entertaining historical perspectives, some thought provoking approaches and derivations, and some nice tie-ins of different problems in engineering and mathematics.It makes for a good bedtime read for one with enough mathematical background and a willingness to forgive some trespasses.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wish more books like this
    Explaining the true physical meaning of an imaginary real quantity and showing its real imaginary applications.

    3-0 out of 5 stars somewhat dense and no problems to solve by the reader
    This book is well written, but, it does feel like the venerable professor took his lecture notes and strung them together, but dear me, he left out problems for the reader; this to me is a cardinal sin when it comes to expository math.

    Maybe the professor could create a website with problems + solutions related to the subject matter - give us puzzle people a chance at solving at least a few problems on our own. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0691027951
    Subjects:  1. History & Philosophy    2. Mathematical Analysis    3. Mathematics    4. Number Theory    5. Numbers, Complex    6. Science/Mathematics    7. Theory Of Numbers    8. History of Science and Medicine, Philosophy of Science    9. Mathematics / History   


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